“Overworked, underpaid” is a common lament for broadcasters in minor league sports who double as their team’s media relations director. In-season, 40 hour work weeks are the exception rather than the rule, and small salaries make it hard to pay the bills.
Good news might be on the immediate horizon.
Thanks to a new law going into effect in December, salaried workers earning less than $47,476 will qualify for overtime when they work more than 40 hours per week.
Minor league baseball and hockey employees could be earning more money. Maybe.
After the law takes effect, minor league sports employers will have at least three options:
- Pay the overtime.
- Give raises to put employees over the $47,476 threshold (unlikely).
- Change some full-time positions to seasonal.
The new rules are being embraced with cautious optimism in minor league sports. One broadcasting and media relations director told me:
“I am not seasonal, but a full-time employee with benefits who works 9-5 everyday during the summer. However, during the season, and with the way the [league] schedule works, I far exceed 40 hours a week, and I don’t even want to fathom how many hours I actually work on a week with five home games like happens sometimes! That’s all part of the sports world and I’ve come to love it, but who knows how this law impacts that.
“Something to keep an eye on. I’m sure like always employers will adjust because I can’t imagine minor league teams gladly starting contracts at 47k to avoid having to pay overtime to folks like myself, although I wouldn’t complain!”